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Thread: Finally got me a camera drone

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
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    9,626

    Finally got me a camera drone

    After thinking about it for years I got one for my 70th birthday!

    I decided on the DJI Mavic Air 2. I've only flown it twice so I'm rank beginner. Maybe I'm easily impressed but I am impressed! The thing is an incredibly stable camera platform.

    I've been concentrating on learning the basics to control the thing, takeoff and landing, forwards backwards and sideways, figure 8s - and without smashing the thing! While flying I shot a little video and stills for practice. I'm starting the get a handle on smooth acceleration and deceleration but it will take a long time to master smooth coordination on the multi-axis moves! I'm no stranger to flying aircraft but piloting through a phone screen is a whole different experience...

    I put a few little pieces of video together from my second flight just for fun and made a VERY short test video. I did NOT shoot with the intention of telling a story, just some point-and-shoot with no "B" roll, so the story is horribly weak and kind of choppy! However, it was good practice with the video editor I'm learning, Adobe Premiere Elements.

    Good clean fun!



    Hey, you video and drone experts, go easy on me! I assume there are a bunch that hang out here. The photos and video were all with the defaults, I didn't even try the high resolution modes.

    A couple of stills shots from our place. The camera is rock solid even in the wind, almost like it's on a tripod. The long shot shows the house and horse pasture from hundreds of feet up from where I'm controlling behind the barn, way down the hill on other side of the ridge.

    DJI_0011.jpg DJI_0023.jpg

    This promises to be fun!

    JKJ

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Waterford, PA
    Posts
    247
    Careful of those trees, John.

    I’ve been flying radio controlled aircraft for years, and I know those trees can get you. They’re devious.

    But I love you video. Very nice. I look forward to more.

  3. #3
    Someday, when I retire, I hope I can have as much fun as you do John. You're always up to something and you seem to enjoy every single day. And that's the way it should be!

    Your farm is beautiful! Enjoy your new drone!

    Fred
    Last edited by Frederick Skelly; 06-02-2020 at 7:17 AM.
    "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
    - Sir Edmund Burke

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Hayes, Virginia
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    13,586
    Very cool John, looks to me link you are already a professional.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    52,975
    I think you did a great job flying that thang...
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lewiston, Idaho
    Posts
    27,335
    Seemed good for an amateur to me John. Now you can spy on your animals and find out what they do when your are not in their presence.
    Ken

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    West Lafayette, IN
    Posts
    5,827
    Very cool! Those must be fun to fly, never done it myself. Doubt my wife would blow $800 on a birthday present for me though! She thinks I have too much stuff as it is. Lol

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lewisville, NC
    Posts
    1,188
    Very nice John....looks like quality video to me. Look forward to more video.
    I have envisioned some of the scenes you show when you have talked about the animals in the past......now it's a movie.......and I am a visual learner!

    Jim

  9. #9
    Your video looks great to me - not amateur at all. When you "zoomed in" was that with the camera or were you getting closer with the drone? I can see some real possibilities with a drone.

    BTW, look at PowerDirector software if you decide you don't like Adobe Premiere Elements. Very easy and intuitive to use and not that expensive.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Evanston, IL
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    1,385
    Looked good to me. Hope the llamas are credited in a future film; they have star potential.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Inkerman, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    671
    Looked great, quite smooth and clear. Looks like a great spot that you live.

  12. #12
    Looks like great fun! Seeing the animals look up at it ,I'm pretty sure they are wishing they could go up. Like the French
    animals Jefferson watched. People who claimed to understand animal speak reported the goat said "You look pretty
    small and insignificant from up there".

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Schenectady, NY
    Posts
    1,469
    That's fantastic John! Can't wait to see what you do when you have more experience.

    And a very Happy Birthday young fella!!!
    Happy and Safe Turning, Don


    Woodturners make the world go ROUND!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    E TN, near Knoxville
    Posts
    9,626
    Thanks for the comments and compliments, everyone! I'm having a blast. I spent the day hauling and putting up hay and I kept thinking how interesting it would be to get some aerial photography of the cutting and bailing and loading.

    Tony Z, believe me, I'm constantly aware of the trees! I've been studying for weeks the ways people lose, damage, and destroy their drones and flying into trees was probably the #1 mistake!

    Fred, my motto is "if you can't have fun, why bother??"

    Mike H., there is no zoom on the camera - any zoom or other motion is with the flight controls. The trick is getting the motion smooth enough! I've done many hundreds of hourse of of video editing over the years and tried out Premiere a long time ago. Both the full version and Elements is kind of klunky compared to what I was used to (SpeedRazor) but I think it will do the job. There is a lot to learn but I bought a good book. The "easy" doeen't matter to me nearly as much as the feature set.

    Matt D., I've done aerial photography from airplanes and helicopters and in comparison, this thing is almost free! I already have a list of friends who want me to come and shot pictures of their place from the air.

    Jon N., the llamas have already been featured on two TV commercials! Two of them, a mother and daughter, have won a number of awards at llama shows. I also take them to churches, schools, assisted living homes, and Christmas parades. Come visit - take a llama for a walk!

    Mel F., the first day of flying I took it out in the horse pasture since it's a wide open space. At one point I flew the thing low towards where the three horses were having a hay snack. I didn't want to get too close and spook them so the picture is a frame captured from the video, cropping to zoom in a bit. Two of the horses are looking at the thing like "what in the world..." The horse on the left is totally blind and didn't notice. They've done something with the propellers on this drone to make it a lot quieter than most so he might not have even heard it.
    Drone_horse_still_uncropped.jpg Drone_horse_still.jpg
    They stared at it until I moved up and away then went back to eating hay!

    JKJ

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    Lake Gaston, Henrico, NC
    Posts
    4,872
    Nice Toy! I'm surprised you are still feeding hay, this time of year. Ours won't even bother to smell of hay, once the grass is out.

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